I find few things more relaxing than enjoying a first-class meal in a comfortable hotel while looking out over the vineyards that grew the wine I am drinking. A gem of a retreat that takes me away from the political scene in Bonn is the Altes Gasthaus Moseltor, a small hotel in the town of Trarbach on the Moselle River in the state of Rhineland-Palatinate. The steep hillsides of the Moselle produce some of the finest white wines in the world.
The Altes Gasthaus Moseltor (literally the Old Guesthouse at the Mosel Gate) had its origin in the 13th Century. The hotel has been in the same family's hands since 1838. It has been rebuilt, and 10 years ago the rooms were modernized. The staff is pleasant and speaks English.
But the real treasure is the kitchen, with a German version of nouvelle cuisine that the sophisticated French guidebook "Gault-Millau" rates as one of the 50 best in Germany. I recommend beginning with a glass of local sekt , a German sparkling wine, and then having a bottle or carafe of Moselle. On my last visit, I had a superb combination of lobster and cauliflower mousse, followed by a beautifully done pigeon. The lamb with rosemary was equally delicious.